Richard III Research and Discussion Archive

Fw: {Disarmed} Re: {Disarmed} [Richard III Society Forum] Stillingto

2017-06-30 06:11:37
Nance Crawford
ΓΏ
Strike me, it's late - I just realize i wrote that Eleanor was six years older than Edward. Blast it, that was Elizabeth. Eleanor was four years his senior. It's late. Most of you are probably waking up. Me, obviously need sleep. G'night. www.NanceCrawford.com
KING'S GAMES: The Commentaries
http://amzn.to/1VvKiHV
----- Original Message ----- From: Nance Crawford To: Sent: Thursday, June 29, 2017 9:32 PM Subject: Re: {Disarmed} Re: {Disarmed} Stillington and Clarence - closer than we thought?

This is a long one. Sorry, have been reading along but have had no time to comment, and will have to read the following comments tomorrow evening, as I have to get back to work.

Hilary, you make excellent points re our contemporary perusals and judgments about the participants.

Doug, I'll go to the wall for Stillington's silence being honest. Whether or not he was a professional churchman, he had served Edward from the beginning of the reign. He did not have to be Edward's official confessor to have learned Edward's secrets. He may even have been the person Edward sent to Eleanor Butler to tell her it was over  I don't doubt that only a pragmatic priest would have the skill and patience to counsel her, and help her find the presence of mind to keep quiet about the entire matter, lest she be held up to ridicule and ruin whatever hopes her prospective brother-in-law might have in the new reign. Edward would have presumed Stillington's silence  he later set him up with an ungodly amount of income from Bath and Wells - until, suddenly, he throws the man into prison for several months for, apparently, no good reason (unless Hilary or someone else has found one), right about the time George behaves incredibly foolishly and with such arrogance, that he is slapped into confinement, tried and found guilty of lese majesty, and then, however it happened, became judicially dead.

People seem to discount the fact that, from birth to death, the Church still had everyone by the soul, codpiece and cassock. Whatever Stillington knew, he did not hear it in the confessional, or we would not even have the information that has survived. He was there, daily  at the time of the Butler incident he was Keeper of the Seal, always handy to the new king. It is not at all surprising that he kept silent. His livelihood depended upon his discretion.

To all intents and purposes, Eleanor had retired from the world. I don't understand why nobody has pointed out that, although she was still young enough (and obviously attractive) she never publicly remarried. The obvious reason is that she (and Stillington  and, perhaps, her sister, who could say nothing) knew she was already married. In that age, a widowed young woman of good family, even one with no living children, was marriage material for any widower with no need of another dowry but having half-orphaned children of his own to raise and a household manager who was obligated to sleep with him.

She had two choices: marriage or the cloister. She could not marry. There wouldn't be a Carmelite nunnery in England for another thirteen years; nevertheless, she finally took vows as a Carmelite tertiary, to live in the world but not as a part of it, and was dead twenty-seven months later, age thirty-two.

Within two months, Edward bound himself to Elizabeth Woodville Grey.

No doubt that, at Reading, Stillington was even more shocked than Warwick, when Edward said, I've made my choice. Live with it.

And there they all were.

Although to some of you it would be a simple primer, I wish you'd take a look at KING'S GAMES, The Commentaries. It was separated from the play edition and intended as basic guide for people (and actors) not familiar with the milieu, a gift for the ignorant. It is a lot of work being presently ignored and needs stand-alone Amazon reviews. I'd appreciate your informed comments.

Hope I haven't worn out my welcome.

www.NanceCrawford.com
KING'S GAMES: The Commentaries
http://amzn.to/1VvKiHV
----- Original Message ----- From: Durose David daviddurose2000@... [] To: Sent: Thursday, June 29, 2017 5:49 AM Subject: Re: {Disarmed} Re: {Disarmed} Stillington and Clarence - closer than we thought?

Hilary, Re Point 2 - the previously used plot
It goes like this...
Clarence spends many years as heir presumptive. Stillington falls out of favour with Edward for various reasons and sees his power diminish. Stillington sees that Clarence is dissatisfied and has been put further down the pecking order by the Woodville marriage. Stillington approaches Clarence with intention of replacing Edward, Stillington would be back in favour Clarence points out that he is no longer heir and the young Edward would be crowned Stillington says he would claim to have previously married Edward to Eleanor, knowing Edward had helped her and / or she had been his mistress - she is now dead and it would be difficult to disprove if Edward was also gone
Fast forward to 1483. Richard gets himself in a bind by his rash actions after Edward's death, Stillington has a ready made solution.
My argument would be that providing a vector by means of which the 'knowledge of the pre-contract' can be traced is begging the question.
The fact that Clarence was planning to send his son abroad is another instance of separation of heirs. He would become very important if Clarence was going for the throne.
Hope this makes sense.
Regards David


Sent from Yahoo Mail on Android
On Tue, 27 Jun 2017 at 9:51, Hilary Jones hjnatdat@... [] <> wrote:

Hi David, point 1 is a good point unless of course he was so frightened of EW (and her mother) that he dare not go back on a promise. Re point 2, who would ask Stillington to do this - someone who wanted to get rid of Edward's heirs? Do you have anyone in particular in mind? It is a good point. What has always puzzled me is the silence of the Talbots. Now they were Lancastrian in leaning so why didn't they step forward and say their sister had been wronged? One can understand them keeping quiet under HT but they had nothing to fear under Richard - it would just have endorsed the case? H

From: "Durose David daviddurose2000@... []" <>
To: "" <>; "" <>
Sent: Monday, 26 June 2017, 22:25
Subject: Re: {Disarmed} Re: {Disarmed} Stillington and Clarence - closer than we thought?

Hilary and Karen,
Firstly, there is no contemporary source that mentions proof as far as I know. Commynes, who will have met Henry's rebels, some of whom may have been present, specifically says that no proof was offered and that Stillington said only he was present.
It seems the recent posts about the pre contract have a couple of issues
1 If Edward IV married EW to avoid marrying, he need not have done it, because if the alleged marriage had already happened, surely all he needed to do was to let it be known that there was an impediment.
2 Most of the circumstantial evidence, bringing together the various parties also supports alternative hypotheses - that Eleanor may have been a mistress - that no relationship existed between Eleanor and Edward, but in the 1470s, Stillington offered to put forward the story 'if the king died' knowing the couple's paths had crossed and Eleanor was now dead. This would explain how the story came so quickly to his mind in 1483 - it was one he had used earlier.
Regards David

Sent from Yahoo Mail on Android
On Mon, 26 Jun 2017 at 14:10, Hilary Jones hjnatdat@... []d <> wrote: K Yes, if you read my posts from years' ago you'll know that, despite JAH, I was sceptical about the reality of the Pre-Contract and certainly Stillington's involvement. But it's all getting too close, too cosy amongst these people. Just throw MB into the gentlewomens' circle who took the modern equivalent of afternoon tea and it gets very interesting. It would be like one of those Thora Hird sessions in the Last of the Summer Wine :) H

From: "Nicholas Brown nico11238@... []" <>
To: "" <>
Sent: Monday, 26 June 2017, 12:08
Subject: Re: {Disarmed} Re: {Disarmed} Stillington and Clarence - closer than we thought?

Hi Hilary,
I think you are right about he Hastings scenario. He was closest to Edward, and would have been sworn to secrecy. The events of June 13 1483 are still unclear, but it is possible that he confessed the truth when confronted by a furious Richard, and the execution happened soon after.
As for the others knowing, if Clarence knew, the first people he would have told would have been Anne Beauchamp, Warwick and Isabel. Anne Beauchamp must have known how land from her family had ended up with Hampton. Cecily could easily have been left out, and Anne Neville because she only about 12 at the time. However, Anne Beauchamp lived with Anne and Richard later on, and the temptation to reveal unfavourable gossip about Edward - who had treated her badly - would be hard to resist. That is why I think Richard could have heard of it, then dismissed it as a malicious rumour from Warwick and Clarence. Alternatively, she told Anne, who didn't tell Richard, because she thought it might make him angry, given his loyalty to Edward. I'm not sure either way, but I do think Edward could have lied to him, and when he found out he would have been devastated.

Overall, this is another piece of circumstantial evidence that indicates that Stillington was telling the truth when he came forward in 1483, and the likelihood of George, Isabel and Anne Beauchamp knowing raise more questions about the Ankarette Twyhno affair, and the possible murder of Eleanor Talbot.
Nico


On Monday, 26 June 2017, 11:23, Nicholas Brown <nico11238@...> wrote:


Mary wrote: Nico, do you think that Warwick knew from 1461 onwards or soon afterwards? The reason that I ask is that in 1464 he was busy trying to arrange Edward's marriage to Bona of Savoy, I just wonder that if he did know was he planning not to tell the French or anyone else for that matter?
That is a interesting question, as Warwick and Edward were close at the time, but my instinct is that he probably didn't, because I don't think he would have proceeded with the Bona of Savoy negotiations if he did. I don't believe he would have encouraged a marriage that he knew was bigamous, for both moral reasons and because he would have been aware of the unpleasant consequences if the marriage to Eleanor was revealed after Edward had married Bona. However, he may well have known that Edward had a relationship with Eleanor, or perhaps it was some sort of betrothal, but not a valid marriage.
Romanemo wrote: Or maybe, Edward married Elizabeth because he knew he couldn't marry a princess, in case his previous marriage to Eleanor would be revealed, thus causing a terrible diplomatic crisis ?
I didn't really occur to me that Edward would think ahead that much, as he strikes me as an arrogant young man who thought thought that because he was the King, his impulsive and stupid decisions would never come back to haunt him. However, it is a possibility that he eventually did wake up to the fact that he was in deep water, with one wife paid off while secretly married to another, and decided that revealing the marriage to Elizabeth was the answer. He may have had no choice because if he didn't, the Woodvilles knew and would shout it from the rooftops. Initially he could have been hoping to keep the marriage to her a secret too, otherwise why not do it publicly? This show his naivety though, since the pushy ambition of the Lancatrian Woodvilles had been well known at least since Agincourt. If there was anyone who a King with a dirty secret should avoid it was a woman who had parents and brothers with strong personalities to defend her honour.

The relationship between Elizabeth Woodville and Edward is an interesting question. There is that story from Thomas More about them meeting under an apple tree, which is probably a myth, and personally, I suspect that she had been his mistress for some time. May 1st 1464 is the generally accepted date of the marriage, but there is no proof that is wasn't earlier. There was that portrait from Queen's College Cambridge, which dated 1463, which appears to be a copy of an earlier painting, as the spelling on the name and date seems to be from a later date. However, this caption probably repeats the essence of what was originally written (most likely in Latin.) It was rare at the time for someone of Elizabeth Woodville's status to have a portrait of that calibre painted, although it clearly looks like her. However, if she was the King's mistress (or perhaps already secretly his wife), then a formal portrait wouldn't have been so unusual. The longer he was with her, the longer the Woodvilles had to dig their heels in. There is also the possibility that Edward liked the dynamic of their close knit family, when his own was rather diffuse, with Jacquetta being a Carole Middleton type figure while Cecily was a more regal and distant mother.
Nico


On Monday, 26 June 2017, 9:46, "maryfriend@... []" <> wrote:


I have also thought that maybe Edward married Elizabeth because he knew that marrying Bona of Savoy would be difficult. Originally I wondered what if he had married Bona and then the story of the pre-contract had surfaced but it has crossed my mind that he might have done it deliberately.
Mary








On Tue, 27 Jun 2017 at 9:51, Hilary Jones hjnatdat@... [] <> wrote:

Hi David, point 1 is a good point unless of course he was so frightened of EW (and her mother) that he dare not go back on a promise. Re point 2, who would ask Stillington to do this - someone who wanted to get rid of Edward's heirs? Do you have anyone in particular in mind? It is a good point. What has always puzzled me is the silence of the Talbots. Now they were Lancastrian in leaning so why didn't they step forward and say their sister had been wronged? One can understand them keeping quiet under HT but they had nothing to fear under Richard - it would just have endorsed the case? H

From: "Durose David daviddurose2000@... []" <>
To: "" <>; "" <>
Sent: Monday, 26 June 2017, 22:25
Subject: Re: {Disarmed} Re: {Disarmed} Stillington and Clarence - closer than we thought?

Hilary and Karen,
Firstly, there is no contemporary source that mentions proof as far as I know. Commynes, who will have met Henry's rebels, some of whom may have been present, specifically says that no proof was offered and that Stillington said only he was present.
It seems the recent posts about the pre contract have a couple of issues
1 If Edward IV married EW to avoid marrying, he need not have done it, because if the alleged marriage had already happened, surely all he needed to do was to let it be known that there was an impediment.
2 Most of the circumstantial evidence, bringing together the various parties also supports alternative hypotheses - that Eleanor may have been a mistress - that no relationship existed between Eleanor and Edward, but in the 1470s, Stillington offered to put forward the story 'if the king died' knowing the couple's paths had crossed and Eleanor was now dead. This would explain how the story came so quickly to his mind in 1483 - it was one he had used earlier.
Regards David

Sent from Yahoo Mail on Android
On Mon, 26 Jun 2017 at 14:10, Hilary Jones hjnatdat@... []d <> wrote: Yes, if you read my posts from years' ago you'll know that, despite JAH, I was sceptical about the reality of the Pre-Contract and certainly Stillington's involvement. But it's all getting too close, too cosy amongst these people. Just throw MB into the gentlewomens' circle who took the modern equivalent of afternoon tea and it gets very interesting. It would be like one of those Thora Hird sessions in the Last of the Summer Wine :) H

From: "Nicholas Brown nico11238@... []" <>
To: "" <>
Sent: Monday, 26 June 2017, 12:08
Subject: Re: {Disarmed} Re: {Disarmed} Stillington and Clarence - closer than we thought?

Hi Hilary,
I think you are right about he Hastings scenario. He was closest to Edward, and would have been sworn to secrecy. The events of June 13 1483 are still unclear, but it is possible that he confessed the truth when confronted by a furious Richard, and the execution happened soon after.
As for the others knowing, if Clarence knew, the first people he would have told would have been Anne Beauchamp, Warwick and Isabel. Anne Beauchamp must have known how land from her family had ended up with Hampton. Cecily could easily have been left out, and Anne Neville because she only about 12 at the time. However, Anne Beauchamp lived with Anne and Richard later on, and the temptation to reveal unfavourable gossip about Edward - who had treated her badly - would be hard to resist. That is why I think Richard could have heard of it, then dismissed it as a malicious rumour from Warwick and Clarence. Alternatively, she told Anne, who didn't tell Richard, because she thought it might make him angry, given his loyalty to Edward. I'm not sure either way, but I do think Edward could have lied to him, and when he found out he would have been devastated.

Overall, this is another piece of circumstantial evidence that indicates that Stillington was telling the truth when he came forward in 1483, and the likelihood of George, Isabel and Anne Beauchamp knowing raise more questions about the Ankarette Twyhno affair, and the possible murder of Eleanor Talbot.
Nico


On Monday, 26 June 2017, 11:23, Nicholas Brown <nico11238@...> wrote:


Mary wrote: Nico, do you think that Warwick knew from 1461 onwards or soon afterwards? The reason that I ask is that in 1464 he was busy trying to arrange Edward's marriage to Bona of Savoy, I just wonder that if he did know was he planning not to tell the French or anyone else for that matter?
That is a interesting question, as Warwick and Edward were close at the time, but my instinct is that he probably didn't, because I don't think he would have proceeded with the Bona of Savoy negotiations if he did. I don't believe he would have encouraged a marriage that he knew was bigamous, for both moral reasons and because he would have been aware of the unpleasant consequences if the marriage to Eleanor was revealed after Edward had married Bona. However, he may well have known that Edward had a relationship with Eleanor, or perhaps it was some sort of betrothal, but not a valid marriage.
Romanemo wrote: Or maybe, Edward married Elizabeth because he knew he couldn't marry a princess, in case his previous marriage to Eleanor would be revealed, thus causing a terrible diplomatic crisis ?
I didn't really occur to me that Edward would think ahead that much, as he strikes me as an arrogant young man who thought thought that because he was the King, his impulsive and stupid decisions would never come back to haunt him. However, it is a possibility that he eventually did wake up to the fact that he was in deep water, with one wife paid off while secretly married to another, and decided that revealing the marriage to Elizabeth was the answer. He may have had no choice because if he didn't, the Woodvilles knew and would shout it from the rooftops. Initially he could have been hoping to keep the marriage to her a secret too, otherwise why not do it publicly? This show his naivety though, since the pushy ambition of the Lancatrian Woodvilles had been well known at least since Agincourt. If there was anyone who a King with a dirty secret should avoid it was a woman who had parents and brothers with strong personalities to defend her honour.

The relationship between Elizabeth Woodville and Edward is an interesting question. There is that story from Thomas More about them meeting under an apple tree, which is probably a myth, and personally, I suspect that she had been his mistress for some time. May 1st 1464 is the generally accepted date of the marriage, but there is no proof that is wasn't earlier. There was that portrait from Queen's College Cambridge, which dated 1463, which appears to be a copy of an earlier painting, as the spelling on the name and date seems to be from a later date. However, this caption probably repeats the essence of what was originally written (most likely in Latin.) It was rare at the time for someone of Elizabeth Woodville's status to have a portrait of that calibre painted, although it clearly looks like her. However, if she was the King's mistress (or perhaps already secretly his wife), then a formal portrait wouldn't have been so unusual. The longer he was with her, the longer the Woodvilles had to dig their heels in. There is also the possibility that Edward liked the dynamic of their close knit family, when his own was rather diffuse, with Jacquetta being a Carole Middleton type figure while Cecily was a more regal and distant mother.
Nico


On Monday, 26 June 2017, 9:46, "maryfriend@... []" <> wrote:


I have also thought that maybe Edward married Elizabeth because he knew that marrying Bona of Savoy would be difficult. Originally I wondered what if he had married Bona and then the story of the pre-contract had surfaced but it has crossed my mind that he might have done it deliberately.
Mary








On Tue, 27 Jun 2017 at 9:51, Hilary Jones hjnatdat@... [] <> wrote:

Hi David, point 1 is a good point unless of course he was so frightened of EW (and her mother) that he dare not go back on a promise. Re point 2, who would ask Stillington to do this - someone who wanted to get rid of Edward's heirs? Do you have anyone in particular in mind? It is a good point. What has always puzzled me is the silence of the Talbots. Now they were Lancastrian in leaning so why didn't they step forward and say their sister had been wronged? One can understand them keeping quiet under HT but they had nothing to fear under Richard - it would just have endorsed the case? H

From: "Durose David daviddurose2000@... []" <>
To: "" <>; "" <>
Sent: Monday, 26 June 2017, 22:25
Subject: Re: {Disarmed} Re: {Disarmed} Stillington and Clarence - closer than we thought?

Hilary and Karen,
Firstly, there is no contemporary source that mentions proof as far as I know. Commynes, who will have met Henry's rebels, some of whom may have been present, specifically says that no proof was offered and that Stillington said only he was present.
It seems the recent posts about the pre contract have a couple of issues
1 If Edward IV married EW to avoid marrying, he need not have done it, because if the alleged marriage had already happened, surely all he needed to do was to let it be known that there was an impediment.
2 Most of the circumstantial evidence, bringing together the various parties also supports alternative hypotheses - that Eleanor may have been a mistress - that no relationship existed between Eleanor and Edward, but in the 1470s, Stillington offered to put forward the story 'if the king died' knowing the couple's paths had crossed and Eleanor was now dead. This would explain how the story came so quickly to his mind in 1483 - it was one he had used earlier.
Regards David

Sent from Yahoo Mail on Android
On Mon, 26 Jun 2017 at 14:10, Hilary Jones hjnatdat@... []d <> wrote: Yes, if you read my posts from years' ago you'll know that, despite JAH, I was sceptical about the reality of the Pre-Contract and certainly Stillington's involvement. But it's all getting too close, too cosy amongst these people. Just throw MB into the gentlewomens' circle who took the modern equivalent of afternoon tea and it gets very interesting. It would be like one of those Thora Hird sessions in the Last of the Summer Wine :) H

From: "Nicholas Brown nico11238@... []" <>
To: "" <>
Sent: Monday, 26 June 2017, 12:08
Subject: Re: {Disarmed} Re: {Disarmed} Stillington and Clarence - closer than we thought?

Hi Hilary,

(Message over 64 KB, truncated)